Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 MAX gaming headset review: Multiplatform madness
The Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 MAX offers high performance at a premium tier price. But, does it manage to duke it out with other high-end gaming headsets?
Turtle Beach has long since been a stalwart maker of gaming tech, including peripherals and headsets, known for their robust build quality and extreme popularity. However, over recent years, you could argue that they’ve fallen out of favor a little ever since the rise of competitors like Steelseries. So, we’ve taken a look at their latest flagship gaming headset, but is it good enough to stand with the rest?
- Connectivity: Bluetooth 5.1, USB-A dongle (2.4Ghz wireless)
- Driver diameter: 50mm
- Frequency response: 20Hz – 22 kHz
- Weight: 454g
- Compatibility: PC, Xbox Series X|S, Playstation 5, Nintendo Switch
- Features: simultaneous Bluetooth mixing, gel-cooled earcups, 40hour battery life, flip-up microphone.
- Price: $199.99 / £179.99
- Where to buy: Amazon US, Amazon UK
Included in the box: Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 MAX gaming headset, USB-C charging cable, USB-A RF dongle.
Upon unboxing the Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 MAX, you are greeted with a clean, matte black headset with silver trim. There’s no RGB to be found here, but the smooth lines and angles of the headset make it look incredibly professional. There’s minimal branding on the earcups, and across the headband. It’s an understated look that is accentuated by the all-plastic construction, which feels good to the touch.
It doesn’t feel as premium as the LucidSound LS50X, but not many headsets manage to do so. However, we much prefer the feeling of the Stealth 700 Gen 2 MAX, which is immediately comfortable as soon as you put the headset on.
It would have been nice to see a couple more premium features here, with all of the dials, mode switches, and power buttons all crammed onto the left earcup, and we found ourselves fudging around with the various switches and knobs, never really hitting the one we wanted to consistently until towards the end of our testing period.
You might get used to this, but it feels like Turtle Beach could have done a little bit more with regards to the headset’s mode controls, with so much real-estate on the headset itself. They could have also differentiated the buttons a little bit more, which would have been a nice addition.
The earcups themselves feel good, with adequate clamping force and cushioning from the headband. The ear cushions are outfitted with a cooling gel and memory foam, which is incredibly welcome, and feel great while in use for long periods of time.
Our biggest bugbear with eh design is the integrated microphone, which smartly flips down from the headset, but looks and feels incredibly cheap.
The Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 MAX makes use of 50mm drivers to power a relatively neutral soundstage. There is some oomph to the bass response in the low-end, while the mids remain relatively muted, with the highs being slightly harsh while listening to the excellent guitar solos of Metallica.
However, your mileage may vary, in a gaming context, this headset sounds great for tracking your enemies, and hearing gunshots. This is accentuated by the use of the mode button on the left earcup, which reduces the headset’s bass response and really pumps up the mids, highs, and increasing the overall volume of the headset.
It’s a nice little addition that you might find useful in certain titles like Call of Duty, but for more atmospheric games like Elden Ring, you might want to keep the mode button’s so-called “Superhuman hearing” off.
It really does sound good at this price point, it didn’t blow our minds, but instead handled everything that we threw at it very well. However, the slightly crispy high-frequency response is especially prickly and might prove divisive.
The earcups provide an adequate seal to make the headset relatively closed, and the soundstage feels narrow by design. There is also added support for Dolby Atmos on PC and Xbox, which is always an incredibly welcome addition.
Needless to say, if you pick this headset up, you won’t be disappointed with its sound quality. We’d prefer a relatively neutral soundscape to a headset with overly-tuned bass and muddy mids. We’re really impressed.
Flip the relatively cheap-feeling microphone down and you will be met with a better-than-average microphone. Our teammates in Final Fantasy XIV could hear us clearly when shouting out raid positioning with ease.
There’s a good clarity to the microphone, with no phrases sounding too muddy or muffled. We were concerned that the build quality would impact the mic’s performance, but it’s nothing more than good. The built-in mic monitor is welcome and is easily tuned in USB mode.
If you name it, the Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 MAX can probably connect to it. Aided through a multi-mode USB-A wireless dongle, you can easily use this headset on both your Xbox and PS5, which is incredibly welcome. It’s a nice little addition that other headset manufacturers should take note of when developing competitor products of their own.
Bluetooth 5.1 works very well, meaning that you can also connect it up to your Nintendo Switch.
It is disappointing to see that the chat mix dials only work on Xbox, but given the sheer amount of connectivity available on the headset, we can understand that making the feature universal would have proven to be quite a headache.
The Turtle Beach Stealth 700 has additional software in the form of an app and software in the Turtle Beach Audio Hub. Both versions are incredibly easy to use and didn’t give us any headaches when attempting to balance the EQ, or update the headset’s firmware.
The headset worked flawlessly cross-platform, and it’s great to see this headset with this functionality built-in, especially over the slightly snappier 2.4Ghz dongle versus the slightly laggier Bluetooth connection.
The battery life on the Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 MAX is exceptional, where we only had to charge the headset once in the entire time of use. The 40-hour battery life isn’t just a marketing point for the headset, it actually works in practice.
With fast charging via USB-C, the headset offers premium features that you really rarely see in many other gaming headsets.
Should you buy it?
The Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 MAX really is a fantastic gaming headset, with clear audio with very few issues, and generally good build quality. The cross-platform connectivity is really the star of the show, allowing you to just use this one headset for just about everything, instead of needing to switch between multiple headsets between your PC and consoles.
Without a doubt, the Turtle Beach Stealth 700 Gen 2 MAX is one of the best higher-end gaming headset options on the market. It is strong in almost every single area that it tackles, and a cut above the masses of lesser gaming headsets. There are very few gaming headsets that will manage to do it better than Turtle Beach’s latest efforts.
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